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Appalachian Power to invest $40M to upgrade transmission grid in West Virginia

Appalachian Power Co. plans to invest $40 million to upgrade transmission systems in Boone and Kanawha Counties, W.Va., with the aim of improving reliability for customers.

The Boone-South Charleston improvements project calls for updating 18 miles of 46-kV transmission line to 69 kV standards, building a new substation and expanding on an existing substation to meet southern West Virginia's increasing electricity demands by replacing old infrastructure with robust and modern technology, according to a March 30 release.

The American Electric Power Co. Inc. subsidiary will undertake the upgrade with affiliate AEP West Virginia Transmission Co. Inc. and expects to start construction by the end of 2018 and complete it by the end of 2020.

"The work we are proposing, combined with other reliability projects we have going on in the area, will help ensure our customers are getting the best service we can provide at an affordable cost," said Phil Moye, corporate communications manager for Appalachian Power.

The Boone – South Charleston project is the second phase of Appalachian Power's more than $100 million Boone County area improvements project in West Virginia's transmission system. Upon completion, both phases are estimated to bring Boone and Kanawha Counties combined annual tax revenue of about $1.5 million.